Whisky & Steak was “established” in London in 2001. We put “established” in quotes because we were actually just bored at the time. We’re just a gentlemen’s club looking for good pubs with a wide variety of drinks and food! So far we’ve only focused on England, Scotland and Ireland, the home of the good pubs, but now we’re venturing further afield, even testing pubs in Bangkok and Tokyo!
Since 2021 we are part of the Californian “The CosmoPolite Times” and are very happy about the cooperation.
Oh yeah, don’t take the mistakes in the articles too seriously, sometimes we’ve had too many drinks, but when we’re sober we’ll fix it somehow.
“Happiness is having a rare steak, a bottle of whisky, and a dog to eat the rare steak.”– Johnny Carson
The Types of Whisky
Whisky is one of the world’s most popular drinks. It has been around for hundreds of years and has gone through many changes over time. The word “whisky” comes from an old Gaelic term “uisce beatha,” which means “water of life.” Whisky can be made from any type of grain mash, but barley is the most common grain used to make whisky.
There are two main types of whisky: single malt and blended whisky. Single malt whiskies are made only with malted barley at a single distillery, whereas blended whiskies contain both malted and non-malted grains.
Whisky is made by fermenting the grain mash with yeast and then distilling it into alcohol. The distilled alcohol is then put into oak casks to age. The longer the whisky ages, the better it becomes. There are many different types of whiskies available, each with their own unique flavour profile.
Whisky has been a popular beverage for centuries because it is smooth and flavourful. It can be enjoyed on its own or mixed with other beverages. Whisky is also the perfect drink to enjoy while relaxing after a long day, and can be included in cocktails or consumed neat or with ice.
There are many different types of whiskies available, each with their own unique flavour profile. Some of the most popular whiskies include Scotch whisky, the Lakes Whisky, Bourbon Whisky, and Rye Whisky. Each type of whisky has its own unique flavour that can be enjoyed on its own or mixed with other beverages.
Craft whisky: Made from 100% malted barley (often using peat fire), this type of malt whiskey comes unaged but must have spent at least two years maturing in oak casks before it is drinkable. They are made in small batches because of the time-consuming process and the distillers’ passion for creating a high-quality beverage.
Scotch Whisky: Scotch whisky is made in Scotland from malted barley, water, and yeast. The distilled alcohol is then put into oak casks to age. The longer the whisky ages, the better it becomes. There are many different types of whiskies available, each with their own unique flavour profile. Some of the most popular scotch whiskies include Glenfiddich, Glenlivet, and Macallan.
Bourbon Whisky: Bourbon whisky is made in the United States from corn, water, and yeast. The distilled alcohol is then put into oak casks to age. The longer bourbon whiskey ages, the better it becomes. There are many different types of bourbon available, each with their own unique flavour profile. Some of the most popular bourbons include Maker’s Mark, Jim Beam, and Wild Turkey.
Rye whiskey is also made in the United States from rye grain, water, and yeast. The distilled alcohol is then put into oak casks to age. The longer the aged rye whiskey ages, the better it becomes.
Blended Whisky: Blended whisky is made by blending different types of whisky together to create a specific flavour profile. The most popular blended whiskies include Johnnie Walker, Dewar’s, and Chivas Regal.
Single Malt Whisky: Single malt whiskey is also made in the United States from malted barley grain, water, and yeast. The distilled alcohol is then put into oak casks to age. The longer single malt whiskey ages, the better it becomes.
Irish Whiskey: Irish whiskeys are similar to their Scottish counterparts with one major difference: they use both malted and non-malted barley.
Tennessee Whiskey: Tennessee whiskey is similar to bourbon, but it must be filtered through sugar maple charcoal before it’s put into the barrel to age. This gives Tennessee whiskey its unique flavour profile.
Japanese Whisky: Japanese whisky is made using only malted barley. The mash is fermented with yeast and then distilled twice.
Canadian Whisky: Canadian whiskey is similar to American bourbon, but it’s made using only rye grain instead of corn or wheat. It must also be aged in oak casks for at least three years before being sold as Canadian whisky, unlike other whiskies, which can be released after ageing less than four years (which was previously required).
Whisky has been around for centuries and has always been a popular beverage choice. The reason whisky is so popular is because it can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. You can drink it neat, on the rocks, or mixed with other drinks. Whisky also has a complex flavour profile which is unique according to the type and region it’s made in.
Whisky also has certain health benefits.
It can help increase cognitive function.
It can improve heart health.
It can help with weight loss.
It has anti-inflammatory properties.
Ingredients used to make whisky include:
Honey (for some)
This depends on the type of whisky being made. For example, casks can be used to age whisky, which will give it different flavours and aromas. Whisky is also aged in various types of barrels, such as bourbon or sherry ones. This process adds more flavour into the final product because certain compounds are absorbed by the barrel’s wood over time, adding vanilla tones, for instance. The longer a whisky age in these barrels, usually about 25 years minimum, the more complex it becomes, with notes ranging from butterscotch to coffee beans. It really depends on what you prefer when tasting whiskey.
Whisky will remain a very popular beverage for centuries to come, and even more so now with the new craft spirit movement making its mark around the world.
THE BEST PUBS
Our Top 5 Pubs in London🏴
1. Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese (🥃🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩🥩)
2. Lamb and Flag (🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩🥩) 💥🍽💥
3. The Holly Bush (🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩)
4. The Ten Bells (🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩)
5. The Star Tavern (🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩)
Our Top 5 Pubs in Edinburgh🏴
1. Salt Horse (🥃🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩🥩🥩)
2. Malt & Hops (🥃🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩🥩)
3. The Sheep Heid Inn (🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩🥩)
4. The Blue Blazer (🥃🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩) 💥🍻💥
5. Brass Monkey (🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩)
Our Top 5 Pubs in Dublin🇮🇪
1. The Swan (🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩🥩🥩)
2. MVP (🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩🥩)
3. The Gravediggers (🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩🥩)
4. Palace Bar (🥃🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩)
5. Toners (🥃🥃🥃) & (🥩🥩)
Steaks are the most palatable when they are grilled. The best steak for grilling is the sirloin steak, but it tends to be a bit tough. The T-bone steak and the porterhouse steak are both excellent choices and the bone in them give them an added flavor. Rib-eye steaks also grill well, as do the rib steaks. Filet mignon steaks do not generally find their way to the backyard barbeques owing to their steep prices. Thick steaks grill well than thin ones – the thin ones tend to form a hard crust, which interferes with the cooking of the interior of the steak.
There’s nothing comparable to a backyard barbeque on a pleasant summer day – and what better ingredient to barbeque than a steak!
For grilling, a good marbled steak is preferred. The marbling of a steak is the shreds of white fat that are visible in the red meat. More the specks of fat; better will be their flavor. Most of the fat liquefies while cooking and the steak simmers in its own fat giving it an incomparable taste.
The basic trick of a good grilled steak is not in the actual grilling process, but in the marinade. Marinating must be done not earlier than 2-3 hours of the grilling, unless it is a flank steak, in which case it can be marinated overnight. Acidic liquids are the best marinades, such as curds, lemon juice and tomato juice; even whiskey and wine. Marinades make the steaks tender and easier to grill.
Another important factor for the grilling is the barbeque grill. It is wise to buy decent charcoal and lighter fluid. Cheap varieties would burn non-uniformly and this would not grill the steak evenly. The coals should burn with bright steady flames and should turn white when the steaks are ready to be placed on the grill. Ideally, steak grilling requires constant attention and someone must be beside the grill throughout the process to turn the steaks. Steaks are to be turned a couple of times depending on the type of steak that is used. Thrice is usually enough.
Steak aficionados know that basting a steak with butter as soon as it is done gives it an extra flavor. Properly grilled steaks do not require much garnishing. A dash of salt and a sprinkling of peppercorn are usually sufficient. Steaks should be let be for a couple of minutes before serving to allow the juices to settle. Grilled steaks are usually eaten with boiled potatoes, salad and sauces such as Worcestershire and mustard.
Before arranging for a barbeque, it is necessary to check out with the local authorities as some neighborhoods have regulations concerning the use of charcoal grills. These regulations may be about the distance that a grill should be placed from the house and that someone tends the fire constantly.
Which Steak Marinade?
The world of marinades and rubs can be pretty confusing to the novice cook. Some say that steak marinades are a must, while others recommend just salting your steak and tossing it on the grill. You’ll hear that marinades tenderize meat and that they toughen it, that some are better than others, and that certain ingredients work magic on a cheap steak. Is there truth in any of it? Let’s take a look at some of the basics behind marinating to help you find the best steak marinades for your situation.
First, just what is a marinade? In most cases, it’s a flavorful liquid with a mildly to strongly acidic base that’s used to get flavor into the meat. The liquid permeates your steak, infusing it with the taste of the marinade.
Generally, you’ll want to allow the steak to rest in the marinade for a couple of hours only. It can be tempting to assume that if two hours makes a steak more tender, then longer times would make it even better, but that’s not the case. A similar line of thinking leads to overly acid marinades, which have a similar effect to long marinating – tough steak.
You see, initially, the acid in a marinade can help unravel the proteins, resulting in a less chewy steak. However, if you leave the steak in too long, especially in a very acidic steak marinade, you’ll find that the opposite effect occurs. Those unraveled proteins bond back up and form a tough, rubbery meat.
So, don’t be tempted to overdo it with your marinade. A little is good, but a lot is not necessarily better. Start out by following the instructions on any marinade recipe very carefully. That will help you get the best results. After you know what you’re doing, you can take the time to do a little bit of experimentation.
As to the marinade ingredients that work best, it’s hard to say which to choose. It all depends on your personal tastes. Some prefer lemon based marinades, while others like vinegar. Some marinate their steaks in an alcoholic marinade. Pineapple and papaya containing steak marinades will contain enzymes that tenderize the meat, breaking down the proteins. However, you should use them with care.
They add a great taste and create a less chewy steak, but they’ll also reduce a good steak to mush if overused. These fruits are surprisingly powerful, and should be utilized with caution when creating your steak marinades.
You should also remember that a great marinade can’t save a lackluster steak. It’s an unfortunate fact, but a true one. To cook a good steak, you need to start with a good steak. While steak marinades can certainly improve a piece of meat that’s a little below the grade, it’s best to choose the best steaks available to you.
Combine it with your favourite marinade, use a little care in cooking it, and make sure you rest the meat before cutting, and the result will be a delicious steak that will impress your family and friends. Try a few steak marinades today, and think about the results. That’s the best way to get a family favourite.
Single Malt Whisky – Highland Region
If you have ever wanted to shop for whisky you might have gone to a whisky shop or online whisky exchange, but have been confused about the different regions in Scotland. For example, what makes an Islay whisky different from a Highland whisky?
Scotch Whisky Produced in the Highlands
The Highlands is an area that runs from the town of Greenock on the West coast and Dundee on the East coast to the northern Scottish coast. It takes in everything from East to West, excluding the Speyside region (which is the subject for another article.) This is one of the most complex regions of Scotch whisky production. The region could be split into 3 sub-regions – Western Highland, Northern Highland and Southern Highland.
History of Highland Whisky Production
The history of Highland whisky production was radically different from the Lowland production. Highland distilleries were usually very small affairs with local local farmers distilling their own whiskies and then sometimes joining cooperatives. But everything was done on a small scale. In fact Highland production accounted for less than 10%, of whisky production. However Highland whiskies were much better than their Lowland sisters. Therefore they were more expensive. Today the Highlands produces some of the finest examples of Scotch whisky.
1. Northern Highland Whiskies
This is the area between Nairn and John ‘O Groats. Most of the distilleries in this region are found on the coast and so there is a distinct salinity to them. Northern Highland whiskies tend to be stronger on the palate. A whisky taster will find hints of heather and spice combined with a light peaty, smokiness. Northern Highland Distilleries. Glenmorangie. Situated in the town on Tain, this distillery produces high quality highland whisky. It boasts the highest still in Scottish whisky production. It started in 1738 when the production of alcohol started at the Morangie farm. Water is sourced from the nearby Tarlogie springs and local barley is used. It produces some 6,000,000 litres of whisky a year. The whisky is matured in ex-bourbon casks. They produce a special Cellar 13 whisky. This is matured in a warehouse near the sea and inherits the distinctive characteristics of the warehouses location. It is run by the Sixteen Men of Tain – the 16 men who work through the year to produce the whisky. Dalmore. Not far from Tain is the town of Alness, where Dalmore is produced. It takes its water from the River Alness. The single malts produced are distinctly heavy and ‘oily’ and mature well in European oak casks.The barley is sourced locally. The only other ingredient, apart from barley and water is yeast. Dalmore has developed a single strain of yeast which produces a very rich and fruity ‘beer’ from which the spirit is distilled. The whiskies have a rich mahogany flavour with a complex aftertaste. Old Pulteney. Located in the town of Pulteneytown near Wick, Old Pulteney can claim to be the most northerly distillery on the Scottish mainland. It is located on the coast and the strong North Sea winds add to the distinct flavour of this high quality single malt. It is described as a dry whisky with a hint of sea air. They produce the standard 12 year old single malt and various editions of a 15 year old malt. It is used in Ballantine blends.
2. Southern Highland Whiskies
Whisky from the southern highlands is usually more gentle in flavour, but still retains the peaty flavour that are characteristic of Scotch whisky. The whiskies generally have a fragrant and flowery, but soft, sweet taste. Southern Highland Distilleries. Dalwhinnie. There is some discussion if this is a Highland or Speyside whisky. As there is so many distilleries in Speyside to talk about, I’ve classed Dalwhinnie in the Southern Highland region. In a village of the same name is the Dalwhinnie distillery. This is truly in the heart of the Highlands and it the highest distillery in Scotland. Water is sourced from local spring water and there is an abundance of local peat from the surrounding bogs. Although this is a famous brand (being one of the Six Classic Malts) only about 10% of the produced whisky is sold as single malt. The rest is used in blends, most notably Black & White blends. Edradour. Being the smallest distillery in Scotland this produces a unique and rare whisky with only 90,000 litres being produced annually. Because of this it can be quite hard to find. If you do, then it is well worth purchasing it. This distillery is the last ‘farm’ distillery. The local mountain water adds to it’s unique depth and flavour. It’s a very smooth whisky, with just a hint of smokiness. There is no automation at this distillery and because of it’s size, it could be the smallest distillery (legal) in the world. The distillery is the only place where you are guaranteed to find a bottle of this malt. Deanston. Situated on the banks of the River Teith this is a relatively new distillery. The river Teith is the source of the water and is considered one of the purest rivers in Scotland. The river is also the source of the electricity used to for the distillation process. It used to be a weaving shed, but in 1965 started whisky production. Only unpeated malted barley is used and this results in a light, nutty but malty single malt. It is the main ingredient in the Scottish Leader blend, which is known around the world.
3. Western Highland Region
Moving west in the Highland region we find that whiskies produced here are more robust in character than other Highland whiskies. They are more peaty and have well-rounded flavours, with a smooth taste. However there are only a few distilleries left there. Western Highland Distilleries. Oban. Probably the most well known of from the Western Highland region. The distillery, which is in the town of Oban pre-dates the town. It has the classic ‘West-Highland’ flavour which is between the smoky peaty whiskies of the islands and the lighter sweeter malts of the Highlands. It is one of the Six Classic Single Malts. So it is well known worldwide. Ben Nevis. Situated at the foot of Britain’s tallest mountain is the Ben Nevis distillery. The water is sources from the Allt a’Mhuilinn which originate from two pools in the mountains. It used to be a major producer, but it less well-known now. However it produces an excellent single malt. It uses a Coffer still in its production an so is one of the few distilleries to produce both malt and grain whiskies. It is the major whisky in the Long John blend. In Conclusion The Highland region produces some excellent examples of Scotch whiskies. There are many flavours and aromas to enjoy from the salty whiskies of the north east to the light peaty ones in the west.
So look for a good whisky shop or online whisky exchange and you can examine the different ones from the Highland region. To find out more about Scotch whisky and single malts you can visit the Single Malt Whisky Shop where you can find out more information and browse through the products. So pop into the whisky shop and find out more about Scottish single malt whisky.
The Production of Single Malt Whisky in Scotland – A History
When looking at single malt whisky, have you been surprised by the variety on offer? What make Scotch whisky and especially single malt whisky so special? It’s essential to know how single malt whisky is produced in Scotland to really appreciate its uniqueness, this knowledge will help to know where to buy the best whisky. On the Internet there are many places to purchase good quality Scotch, like a whisky exchange or online whisky shop.
Scotch Whisky – Its Origins Researchers say that the distillation process was invented ancient Babylon around 2000 BC. This was really for whisky but for perfumes. Around the start of the 13th century the art of distilling spirits from wine was developed in Italy. Then the practice spread to Ireland and Scotland. Due to the importance of this new spirit the word ‘whisky’ in the Gaelic language (the language spoken by the Irish and Scots) means “water of life”. It is thought that the process of distilling grains came from Ireland and that the Scots may have learned whisky distillation from the Christian missionary monks, who had travelled over from Ireland. The first recorded documentation of distilling spirits is held by the Scots, but in saying that, no one can really be sure when the drink from distilled grains was produced. To have the title of ‘Scotch Whisky’, the whisky must have been distilled in Scotland and have been matured for at least three years in wooden casks and been stored on Scottish ground. Whisky is produced in some other countries will be spelled whiskey. Whiskey produced in the US and Ireland has the ‘e’ at the end. Whereas whiskies produced also in Canada and Japan do not have the ‘e’ at the end. Scotland certainly produces fine single malt whiskies, and although many countries do produce their own nothing can quite compare to a fine Scotch single malt whisky. Necessary Ingredients for High Quality Single Malt. The three main ingredients needed to distil high quality Scotch single malt whisky are pure water, barley and peat. All three of these factors are in great quantity in Scotland. The Scottish climate is a major factor in producing high quality barley. Most Scottish distillers prefer using local, Scottish barley, but the source isn’t an important factor. For high quality single malt the barley should have a higher content of sugar. The water from the hills is clean and pure and fresh peat is in abundance. The Scottish water is naturally ‘soft’, when flowing from the mountains it is naturally filtered through peat and is very clean. All these factors combine to give Scotch whisky a unique taste. Single Malt Whisky or Blended Whisky? Blended whiskies and single malt – these are the two types of Scotch whiskies. In recent years some whisky producers have been selling their own ‘grain whisky’. Any Scotch whisky must be matured in oak casks for a minimum of 3 years. The difference between whisky and wines is that whisky doesn’t mature in the bottles. The maturation takes place in the casks, where about 2% evaporates each year (called the angels share). Blended whiskies are those that have been blended together with whiskies from various distilleries with grain whiskies. On the bottle, the age of the blend will be the youngest malt whisky used. Some high quality blended whisky can contain whiskies that have been matured in casks for 50 years! A single malt Scotch whisky will come from just one distillery and not be blended whiskies from other distilleries or with grain whiskies. A good quality single malt will usually have been matured for 8 or 10 years. The older single malts will have a smoother the flavour. What is best – a single malt whisky or blend? This is a matter of opinion. A high quality blended whisky can be even richer in flavour and smoother to the palate than a cheaper single malt My opinion is that in general single malts the best type of whiskies. Talking about whisky, thought, there’s nothing like good quality scotch whisky – as we say in Scotland “a wee dram”. It retains a unique and original flavour which has not changed throughout the centuries. For an extensive range of quality Scotch single malt whiskies and blended whiskies visit a whisky exchange or whisky shop. If you want to find out more about single malt whisky, then visit the Single Malt Whisky Shop. There you can find out more about a whisky exchange and single malt whisky. So pop into the Whisky Shop.
Single Malt Whisky Produced in Scotland
How is Scotch whisky made? This article shows how whisky is made. How do blended whiskies and single malt whiskies differ? Find out by reading this article.
With ninety two distilleries, Scotland is that the undisputed home of whisky and single malts. However to attain the legally protected standing of ‘Scotch whisky’ 3 steps should be followed: 1. it must have been produced using only whole grain; 2. have been distilled in Scotland; 3. for at least 3 years have been kept in oak barrels. For the whole maturation process the whisky must be kept in Scotland.
Why Single Malt Whisky Is Unique
Scotland has six own whisky producing regions. These are Lowlands, Highlands, Speyside, Cambeltown, Islands, Islay. Each area produces whiskies unique to the area. If you wish to buy Scotch whisky you need to take the region into account and generally whiskies from one region will have will be similar to the palate. Every distillery will have a unique factor about it, whether it be biggest one, the most remote one, the most northerly one and the tiniest.
The area called ‘Lowlands’ starts at the town of Greenock (west coast) to Dundee, which is situated on the east coast then south to the England/Scotland border.
The Highland region starts from the border of the Lowland area to the northern Scottish coast, apart from the islands and Speyside.
The Speyside region is located in the Scottish Highlands, but because of the density of distilleries and the type of whisky produced is classed as it’s own region. (Sometimes it is also called ‘Highland Whisky’. In fact over 50% of Scotch whisky is produced in this region.
Campbeltown used to be the main hub of whisky production in Scotland – boasting an impressive 30 distilleries. However only 3 are remaining and producing whisky. Campbeltown is classed as it’s own region because of the unique whisky produced there.
Leaving the Scottish mainland, we come to the Islands, Arran, Isle of Skye, Mull, Jura and the Orkneys.
Islay is a small island, but is classed as a region in its own right.
What is the ‘Malt’ in Single Malt?
In order to make the alcohol the starch from barley needs to be turned into sugars. Top quality barley is first of all soaked in water. It is then spread out to germinate on malting floors. This process is termed “malting”. The barley is then kept at a constant temperature and turned regularly. Large drums are used by some distillers to do this. When a week has passed the barley will start to germinate, this is called ‘green malt. The germinated barley then placed in a large kiln and is dried off, this in turn stops the germination process. Burning peat is used heat the kiln and this adds to the flavour of the whisky. To avoid destroying enzymes, the temperature is kept below 70c. We now have what we call ‘malted’ barley. To make it ready for the next step the malted barley is gound down.
Blended Whisky or Single Malt – Which is Best?
A blended whisky is a blend of single malt whiskies from various distilleries with grain whiskies. Typically individual distilleries will combined their single malt whiskies with grain whiskies to form a singular flavour profile.
It wouldn’t be correct to assume that single malt whiskies are inherently superior to blended whiskeis. Blends just enable the master blender to balance totally different flavours from different single malts to attain their desired flavour.. This means that branded whiskies like Johnnie Walker and Chivas to make sure that they constantly produce a uniform flavour, one that their customers expect.
On the whisky label, the age is that of the youngest malt in the blend therefore a blended 12-year old whisky could have much older whiskies among that mix than that stated on the label.